Mark Houlahan
Tech Editor, Mustang Monthly
February 8, 2005
Contributers: Steve Turner Photos By: Steve Turner, Tom Wilson

The annual SEMA show is a chance for the automotive aftermarket to bringits latest and greatest out for all to see, including buyers, warehousedistributorss, and media types like us. Rows upon rows of performanceparts, restyling components, wheels, tires, restoration and street rodgear, and of course, the ever-present "booth babes" handing outeverything from ping pong balls to autographed posters. Even Primedia'sown booth wasn't immune to the syndrome, with girls from Lowridermagazine and Motor Trend's new "Hard Drive" tour handing out goodies.

Ford was once again the official manufacturer of SEMA. It was last yearas well (Dodge was supposed to be it in '04, but Ford wrote a big checkto aid in the debut of the '05 Mustang right around SEMA time and Dodgegot kicked to the curb). The '05 Mustang itself was the SEMA darling,being debuted as the "Official Vehicle" of the SEMA show as well. Ondisplay were 15 Mustangs from Ford, aftermarket tuners, and performanceshops showcasing the new Mustang's ability to adapt to just about anywalk of performance life. According to Ford, the business of Mustangperformance is nearly a billion dollar industry (go ahead, count thezeros, we'll wait) which is fueled by Mustang enthusiasts that spend anaverage of $1,500 a year on parts and upgrades.

Horse Sense: It was great to see the '05 Mustang throughout theshow. We really loved the great interpretations in performance andstyling the aftermarket companies applied to the new Mustang, from allout drag performance, to road racing, to street machine. For several ofthe companies, parts were being installed and paint or adhesives weredrying mere hours before the transport truck was to pick up theirMustangs for transport to Las Vegas, and we thought only us magazinescribes cut it down to the wire before a big show.

While Editor Turner has had several opportunities to wheel the '05Mustang around, for the rest of the 5.0 staff, SEMA was the first chanceto really get a good look at the new car. Strange thing was it wasnearly impossible to find a stock appearing Mustang on the show floor.Ford doled out Mustangs to some of the top shops and vendors in thecountry, including Bonspeed, Xtreme Mustang Performance, Tiger Racing,Paul's High Performance, Street Scene, Toyo Tires, Classic DesignConcepts, Mustang Racing Technologies, and more. Plus, SEMA was theplace where Roush, Saleen, and Steeda debuted their new Mustangs aswell.

Ford's new Mustang was even recognized by SEMA as the most"accessory-friendly new vehicle" at the California International AutoShow, where it captured three SEMA Vehicle Design Awards. The Mustangreceived 33 percent of the award votes, and SEMA member companies whoparticipate in the SEMA Technology Transfer program were included in theselection process. So, with 11 miles of aisles to walk, 1,100 new partsdebuting, and lots of people to see in just four days, it was a hectictime for the 5.0 staff, but we endured to bring you this SEMA coverage.Now, would someone please send us all a fresh supply of Dr. Scholl's GelInsoles so we can prepare for next year!

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While we drooled over every '05 Mustang on display, some of ourfavorites are shown here, including the Mustangs from (above) 3D Carbon(866) 332-2726;, equipped with a Whipplesupercharger, Brembo 14-inch brakes, 3D Carbon front and rear fascias,HRE 22-inch wheels, and more.
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Street Scene Equipment (888)477-0707;, which sports a Vortech blower, BassaniXhaust, Street Scene body parts, and Pioneer A/V components
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XMP(949) 305-6550; had the baddest '05 of the show,modified with too much to list, but the highlights include a 305-cubeHouston Performance stroker, Novi 2000 Renegade blower, sheetmetalintake, T56 trans, Nitrous Express kit, HRE 20-inch wheels, and tubularsuspension with rear mini-tubs
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Tiger Racing (626) 967-6796;, who prepared Carol Hollfelder's World ChallengeMustang, built this '05 with Classic Design Concepts body parts, MOMO20-inch wheels, StopTech 14-inch brakes, a Vortech blower, BassaniXhaust, and Mobility Products & Design's sleek hand controls
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Paul'sHigh Performance (517) 764-7661; brought the sole dragracer to the party with its '05 sporting a full Bassani Xhaust, PHPsuspension bits, full roll cage, FRPP 4.30 gears, Weld wheels and MickeyThompson rubber which propel the car to low 12's at 113 mph.
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